Among the eight different parts of speech is an important category known as the pronoun. As the name suggests, it has something to do with nouns. A pronoun is a word used to replace a noun. The main purpose of the pronoun is to replace the noun and hence avoid repetitive use of a long lettered noun. For instance, let us say a person’s name is Vaidyanathapura. Imagine a paragraph where Vaidyanathapura is used in five sentences. Instead of using the name five times we can use the name once in the first sentence and replace with a pronoun such as HIM, HE or HIS depending upon the context in which the name is used in the remaining four sentences.
To illustrate with a simple example, look at these two sentences:
‘Vaidyanathapura lived in a small village in India and Vaidyanathapura was a smart boy.’
‘Vaidyanathapura lived in a small village in India and HE was a smart boy.’
The first sentence could be replaced by the second with no loss of meaning. The word 'Vaidyanathapura', a proper noun, is replaced by the word HE. HE is a pronoun. There are many other pronouns like HE and they are known as personal pronouns.
Personal pronouns are of two types, namely subject form and object form. Subject form pronouns replace nouns which are subjects:
‘Mustaq plays cricket’ can be replaced by
‘HE plays cricket.’
Object form pronouns replace nouns which are objects:
‘Mustaq owns a car’ can be replaced by
‘Mustaq owns IT.’
The personal pronouns in the subject form are I, YOU, HE, SHE, IT, WE and THEY. The personal pronouns in the object form are ME, YOU, HIM, HER, IT, US and THEM. You will notice from the list of personal pronouns that some of them are dependent on gender. In the case of the cricket example, if Mustaq is replaced by a girl whose name is Anamika, then the pronoun changes to SHE but in the other example of the car the pronoun IT is still the same. In the quiz that follows you will learn the correct usage of personal pronouns.